From the Crikey grapevine, the latest tips and rumours …

Deflating statistics. Inflation for the June quarter is likely to get the pessimists going again -- it was well below expectations at 0.2%, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics this morning. In the year to June, headline inflation was 1.9%, down from 2.1% in the year to March. Both of the Reserve Bank's preferred inflation measures, the trimmed mean and the weighed median, came in at 1.8%. Forecasters had expected a result of around 0.4%; the result was driven by falls in fuel and clothing; only health insurance premium rises showed strong positive growth. On the bright side, that means it'll be harder for wages to slip into negative real growth territory. The March Wage Price Index was 1.9%; if continued in the June quarter, that'll mean that wages are only stagnant, not falling. Celebrate!